Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Wednesday 20th. March 2013

After all the excitement of Hawfinches and  Great Grey Shrike last week , it was back to earth time with a cold , muddy visit this morning to Sevenoaks Reserve . On arrival , although the birds were singing for the Spring Equinox , it felt far from it , and several layers were once again donned , before starting . First look from the ramp was nothing to write home about birdwise , with gulls , geese and Lapwing being the most numerous seen . Undeterred , I set off towards Tyler Hide , finding Bullfinch calling and Mistle Thrush in full song on the way . From the hide , with the cold wind blowing
straight in , apart from the species seen from the ramp , I could only find 5 Common Snipe , together
on the far side of one of the islands , and , still dozing , a pair of Shoveler in the same area . A few Cormorants were sharing the outer islands with the many Lapwing , and along with the Coots and Moorhens on the flooded area , that was as good as it got . The walk down to Sutton Hide was even
more uneventful , and when I opened the flap , just four Teal and two Canada Geese were all that I found . A check on the reedbed from Slingsby Hide produced absolutely nothing , but on the way back to the ramp , a Great Spotted Woodpecker gave some 'exposure compensation' practise , and a
large flock of Siskin could be heard , high in the Alders behind the fishermen's car park . A male
Wren was singing and displaying along the track towards Long Lake , and a Great Crested Grebe was
found on the East Lake , complete with hair gel , but no sign of any hoped for displaying pairs . Once again , no sign of a Bittern at Long lake , but another small flock of Siskin , lower down this time ,
were found . Retracing my footsteps , the first of two Kingfisher sighting was at the end of Long Lake , as the bird zig-zagged through the trees towards Snipe Bog Lake . There was no sign of the bird when I looked out of Willow Hide , somehow I knew there wouldn't be . All the action on the
lake was from the geese , with Canadas arriving noisily , and even noisier when they left to feed in
the field behind . Just a few Teal and Tufted Duck ,and the ever present Coots made up the numbers ,
and over in the Willow on the far bank , a pair of Jays , almost camouflaged by the branches in front of them . The second Kingfisher sighting was at the corner of the West Lake , on my way back to the car park , but neither posed . Although there were some sunny periods during the visit , it was now getting darker with the threat of rain . A stop at the horse field on the way home found the juvenile Common Buzzard on sentry duty on a fence post , but before I got out of the car , it flew off into the
trees , and nearby , the rookery now has nine nests .


Warren Baker said...

Its quite hard going out there Greenie, despite the Spring having ''arrived''

Good to see you exploring the Camera functions mate :-)

Marianne said...

Good to read your report, as I haven't made it to the reserve for a while. It sounds like spring is taking a while to get going! I love the Buzzard pic especially.

ShySongbird said...

It seems only the Wren was making any acknowledgement to Spring Greenie and my goodness, it really does feel like the depths of Winter still! Always fun to play spot the Snipe :-) I particularly liked th Canada Geese shots.

Phil said...

Even on a pretty standard visit you always manage some decent shots Greenie. I like the Siskin, always hard to get. Glad to see the Buzzard is still ok!